It used to be, in order to have your own dedicated host, you had to plop down hundreds of dollars a month. Today, I noticed that 1and1 has a fantastic deal on dedicated hosting for $60/month on a permanent basis - this is not one of those 6 month deals. Cloud hosting and virtual hosting are, in my opinion, no longer competitive with this deal.
I use dedicated hosting myself and absolutely love it. Most people opt for shared hosting, which introduces them to a world of hurt. If you have multiple websites, shared hosting gets expensive really fast. Plus shared hosting has significant downsides:
- No control of the server. You are at the mercy of the hosting provider and their settings.
- Web hosts cram hundreds, possibly thousands of websites onto a single box. Your website is not alone.
- Greater risk at getting hacked because someone else on the same box got hacked.
- You risk getting kicked off the hosting provider due to "too much CPU, RAM, or other resource usage".
A dedicated host is great because you control the server, what goes on the server, and can chug CPU, RAM, and hard drive all you want. It is your box.
The key aspect of ANY server is bandwidth. Bandwidth is usually most web host's trigger mechanism for "there is a problem" and you get booted. 1and1 offers the most bandwidth of all the various dedicated hosts out there (1TB per month) before that trigger mechanism - although, instead of getting the boot, they just charge per GB past that point. 2GB RAM is a bit skimpy though to run, say, the resource hog known as WordPress. However, that's plenty of RAM for Barebones CMS.